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Stand Up & Slam!

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Stand-up comedy: poetry’s idiot relation, right? Performance poetry: comedy’s boring cousin, yes? Find out in an epic battle of spoken word where six phenomenal acts go head to head for your approval. We’re mashing up poetry and comedy, with unexpected and hilarious results! Watch poets Dan Simpson, Oli Forsyth, Malcolm Head and Clair Whitefield battle it out against comedians Stephen Bailey, Thom Tuck, Rich Wilson and Yianni Agisilaou. Who wins? You decide! “Inspired” The Latest. “My preconceptions were suitably challenged” Mashable UK. “Witty, fast paced, and most importantly funny” Fringe Review.

Here’s who you can expect to see…

Founder of Stand Up & Slam!, former Canterbury Laureate and a seasoned Larmer performer, Dan creates highly engaging and contemporary poetry that is popular, smart and funny. “Charmingly geeky” The Scotsman. “Clever and creative” Sabotage Reviews. Catch Dan competing in and hosting Stand Up & Slam!, and performing his own solo spot.

Clair is a seasoned performer who has taken part in Stand Up & Slam! before, so she’s ready to take on the boys – she’ll be keeping the comedians on their toes! Her pithy poems twist the everyday into the bizarre and magically real. “Wonderful to watch” Three Weeks. She also has a solo show at Larmer Tree, not to be missed.

Acting as both host and contestant (not at the same time!), Oli is an experienced player in Stand Up & Slam!, so he’s ahead of the game. He regularly performs at shows and slams across the county, including the Edinburgh Fringe and events such as Farrago, Hammer and Tongue, ChillPill and Jam Sandwich.

The poetry team’s secret weapon is the multi-talented Malcolm Head, described as “original and brilliant” by Nick Revell. On top of his poetry credentials, he’s performed on comedy stages, supporting Paul Foot and Simon Munnery. Watch him compete in Stand Up & Slam!, as well as doing his own show.

You may know him from Big Brother’s Bit on the Side; now you can watch Stephen Bailey hosting Stand Up & Slam! at Larmer Tree. The Reviews Hub said “Bailey’s confident, funny, and suitably rude”. Stephen will soon be seen on Channel 5’s new series The Funny Thing About and one-off 50 Greatest Celebrity Power Couples, and ITV2’s Safeword.

Described by The Independent as “a watchable, charming performer”, Thom Tuck is a comedian and actor whose show Thom Tuck Goes Straight to DVD got him nominated for Best Newcomer by the Fosters Comedy Awards. He’s also found success on Radio 4 with The Penny Dreadfuls and as host of Sketchorama. Who better to host and compete in Stand Up & Slam! at Larmer Tree?

“Highly entertaining” (Time Out) Rich is a comedy club regular and just so happens to be Resident Team Comedy Captain for Stand Up & Slam! so he’s well prepared for this battle. Nominated for the Best Show at Perth Fringe 2015 and described by Frank Skinner as “a very funny man”, he’ll undoubtedly give the poets a run for their money.

Australian comic Yianni is a headliner all around the world with a mind as sharp as a ginsu blade. His smart but accessible material and ability to improvise skilfully with whatever a room throws at him makes for a laugh-packed experience, which he’ll be bringing to Larmer Tree as a contestant in Stand Up & Slam! “Stunningly good” The Scotsman.

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